Diwali will be a public school holiday in New York City beginning in 2023, according to Mayor Eric Adams, who says it sends a message about the importance of the city’s inclusiveness and that this “long overdue” step will encourage children to learn about the festival of lights.
Adams, who was joined on the campaign trail by New York Assembly Member Jenifer Rajkumar and New York City Schools Chancellor David Banks, said Thursday that he “learned so much” about the Diwali holiday and what it means during conversations on the campaign trail about how to run the state better.
By declaring Diwali a holiday in New York City public schools, he said, “we wanted to send a loud and clear message to the countless number of people who recognize this period of celebration.”
“At the same time, this is an educational opportunity because when we recognise Diwali, we will encourage children to learn about Diwali.” “We’re going to have them start talking about what it means to celebrate the festival of lights and how to turn on the light within yourself,” he explained. Randhir Jaiswal, Consul General of India in New York, thanked Adams for declaring Diwali a school holiday.
Diwali, the Hindu celebration known as the “Festival of Lights,” will be a public school holiday in NYC starting next year. https://t.co/twSksq1wtY
— CNN (@CNN) October 20, 2022
“This had long been an awaiting demand of the Indian-American community.” The award “gives new meaning to diversity and pluralism in New York City while allowing people from all walks of life to experience, celebrate, and enjoy Indian ethos and heritage,” he told PTI.
Rajkumar, the first South Asian-American woman elected to a state office in New York, said she is pleased that “our time has come.” The time has come to recognize the over 200,000 Hindu, Buddhist, Sikh, and Jain New Yorkers who celebrate Diwali, the festival of lights.”